Article 2. Liability For Cost Of Care of California Health And Safety Code >> Division 2. >> Chapter 2.5. >> Article 2.
The board of supervisors in each county may fix the rates to
be charged patients admitted to any county hospital and may direct
any county officer to collect the amounts due the county for
hospitalization and medical care. In fixing and collecting hospital
charges the board may exercise all the powers conferred by Chapter 5
(commencing with Section 17400) of Part 5 of Division 9 of the
Welfare and Institutions Code. The board, or such county officer as
it may authorize or designate, may adjust or compromise hospital
charges for any of the following reasons:
(a) The patient, his estate, or legally responsible relatives are
unable to pay the charges.
(b) Collection of the charges is barred by the statute of
limitations or is otherwise legally uncollectible.
(c) The cost of administering a collection procedure would exceed
the amount of revenue which might reasonably be anticipated would be
(d) Neither the patient nor his legally responsible relatives can
The amendments to this section enacted by the Legislature at the
1973-74 Regular Session shall not be construed to require that any
county adopt standards of indigency or requirements of reimbursement
more stringent than those in use by such county immediately prior to
the effective date of such amendments.
For the purposes of this chapter responsible relative is defined
in Section 17300 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
In collecting charges for care rendered under this chapter,
the board may exercise all powers provided in Chapter 5 (commencing
with Section 17400) of Part 5 of Division 9 of the Welfare and
Institutions Code, as enacted and as it may be amended thereafter.
Unless there exists a reciprocal agreement relating to the
expense of medical care and treatment, it shall be the duty of every
county to pay for the expense of treatment of its indigent residents
furnished by the county hospital of any other county. As a condition
of liability, the county providing such medical and hospital care
shall, not more than ten (10) days after admission, give notice to
the county of residence.